Doomsday Preppers: Moffatt Family

Up next we have a profile of Brian and Sheila Moffatt, of Arizona:

© NatGeo/Sharp Entertainment
They’re supposedly using their 15-acre plot as a ‘doomsday academy’ for their—wait for it!—seven children (with one on the way, of course). From what we’re shown, this amounts to training in a variety of activities one would associate not with disaster or lost-in-the-woods survival, but with being able to ‘take out’ as many hungry ‘fugees/marauders as possible, because surprise surprise – like everyone else, they’re preparing for economic collapse!

We open with a long lingering shot of a biblical quote pinned to the wall—something designed to instill unthinking obedience to one’s parents or something. Ugh, I knew it! Seriously, anytime I hear about or see a family with any more than three or maybe four offspring (who always seem to be creepily indistinguishable), I immediately have to ask myself which evang/fundie snakehandling sect they’re a part of.
Oh, and they homeschool the kids, too. Again, what a surprise!

So…Brian starts us out with the mandatory prepping-rationale soundbite, declaring how “the rate of inflation is absolutely unsustainable!” Yeah, dude, that’s called the end-result of six thousand years of Our culture’s compounding inherent unsustainability coming to bite us in the ass. Maybe prices keep going up because Our culture is built on a foundation of infinite growth on (what we don’t want to admit is) a finite planet, and we’re starting to hit walls as we exhaust the nonrenewable resources we’ve come to rely on to continue prolonging our little experiment?

Brian continues with some blahblah, “…people can’t put food on the table!”
Rhetorical question: has anyone ever stopped to think why people can’t put food on the table?
If (as I assume) he really means, ‘People can’t buy food at the grocery store anymore!’, could that maybe be because Our culture has come to equate ‘putting food on the table’ with ‘being an obedient cog extorted into exchanging one-third of his day in exchange for fiat pieces of green paper’?, all while the so-called ‘value’ of those green pieces of paper continues to drop? What’s the real problem here? Do we want to deal with the symptoms, or the causes?
“You say it’s money that we need/As if we were only mouths to feed”

Anyway…on to the ‘academy’ curriculum. They start the day with some full-contact pummeling (aka Krav maga), and then move onto teaching ‘camouflage’ with stock green ghillie suits. Yet another handy caption reads: ‘The US Army advises adding natural vegetation to suit to blend in locally.’ Moffatts, you live in a scrubby desert – take a tip.
Then there’s a big section where they have shooting practice, at least for the ones over ten years old. I’m sure folks are meant to be shocked about younglings armed with semi-autos, but aside from the obnoxious ‘DOUBLE-TAP IN THE HEAD!!!’ tacti-talk, I didn’t see anything that jumped out at me. I mean, they did at least cover three of the Four Rules of Gun Safety! Thumbs up!
the four rules of gun safety
However, the only thing that seemed off to me was Brian’s comment that ‘shooting skills are only to be used in a worst-case scenario’. So, he’s pretty much telling his progeny that the guns are only to come out to shoot people in a crisis? Not that shooting is simply a valuable skill, or a powerful mental/physical exercise, or a way to humanely harvest game? Mixed signals, much?

Then they do a ‘dad-is-away-from-home’ invasion drill, one of the older daughters gets all shouty and take-charge-y; whatever. I did like the low-tech perimeter alert system made of tin cans!

And to wrap it all up with a bow, Brian says something about how despite all his preparations for collapse, he really just hopes that at the end of the day, everyone can just have food in their bellies so “that we can all have more children!” OH, COME ON! REALLY??! You’re worried about the System collapsing, but you continue to procreate like it’s going outta style?! What the fuck do you think is causing the System to collapse?!?!
Brian, man: barring outside help from an external entity like a comet or whatever, when this little civilizational experiment collapses (just like they’ve all done), history has shown it will ultimately trace its roots to a single Mesopotamian tribe whose top-of-the-pyramid rulers—infatuated with backbreakingly-created agricultural surplii (and mad with the power it allowed them to wield)—began telling a myth of unlimited growth (so long as there was some other tribe next door whose lands they could take), individual competition, the virtues of patriarchy and militarism, a labor-divided production economy, the ‘middle class’, and the wickedness of ‘human nature’ (manifested symptoms which are actually just the result of living in such an abhorrent system), &c., the list goes on and on…
We’ve all inherited this culture’s legacy, and while some of us are trying to do something about it, the Moffats continue to embrace it with all their hearts.

Very surprisingly, the experts give the family only 67 points for ten months’ time.

And as usual, the closing blurb ‘The Odds’ says that the USA could never fail (because that would mean we’ve been wrong!)! Thanks, status quo media mouthpiece!


6 responses to this post.

  1. Read your article. Got it that you despise these folks. So, what the hell are you for?



    • Hi lwk, let’s be clear – I don’t despise them as people, I’m sure they’re a nice family who love and care for each other. I’m also aware of the completely fabricated nature of TV (and this show in particular), so maybe this isn’t who they are at all and it’s just for show. However the fact remains that they do have eight children, which realistically is about six too many. The encouraged freedom to reproduce beyond one’s means is a typical feature of dominator-model (‘Younger’/’Taker’) cultures, as it translates to more sons for the military, which is always a pillar of such societies–as they can only survive by acquiring more lands to support their growing population–which, given more room to expand into and more food to eat, will only continue to grow: simple ecology.
      As for ‘what I’m for’, in a word sustainability. This generally takes the form of ‘new tribalism’, entailing true democracy (which can really only work in small scale–ergo sustainable populations), egalitarian (non-pyramid-shaped) society, a partnership model (instead of hierarchical, superior/inferior) of sexual equality, localized support-based economies, appropriate levels of technology, and living with one’s environment.
      My economics textbook describes me as an ‘anti-growth proponent’.


      • “My economics textbook describes me as an ‘anti-growth proponent’.”

        Kind of like Shaker’s in the 19th century.


      • Well if it does hit the fan, they’ll need all those kids. Never know when you’ll have to sell one to get some buckets of Wise Food Company’s “delicious wild rice.”

  2. I recently started watching this show, and its pretty amazing how naive people are. If our money fails it doesn’t mean the sun will fall out of the sky. Over and over and over again in history monetary systems have failed and it just clears the road for a new system. There is actually a lot more to an economy than money, and its awkward that these people are admitting it without admitting it as they are hoard food and water and provisions. My favorite part of this was her economics lesson that was something like inflation = universe implosion. Who knew?


  3. “Over and over and over again in history monetary systems have failed and it just clears the road for a new system.”

    Exactly. That was how Adolph Hitler and the Nazis came to power in Germany.



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